Tuesday, December 22, 2009

To Chile

Last week we made our way from Arequipa, Peru to the border of Peru/Chile by bus to a small town called Tacna. Once we arrived we began inquiring about tranportation options across the border to the northern most city - Arica, Chile. Before we could get our wits about us we were ushered from one window to the next and into a taxi (something like an old Buick Century) with 4 others and started our drive across the border. The taxi driver didn´t speak a lick of english but showed us through the maze of border crossing formalities and on we went. Less than two hours later we were in Chile and checking into a hotel. We didn´t see much of the town but hit a spot around the corner for dinner and called it a night. The next day we started to see that it was a neat beach town but found a cheap plane ticket out that very day and decided to go with it. By 8pm we were in Santiago, Chile.

Santiago is the first city where I´ve felt like we could have all the modern conviences we are used to. Especially a real cup of coffe, I´m getting really tired of instant coffee and was immediately drawn to a cafe where they had an expresso machine. We stayed in a nice hotel for the first couple of nights near a park but quickly realized that we were breaking the piggy bank and moved into a hostel in the Bellevista neighborhood about 10 blocks away for the rest of our stay. The hostel La Chimba had a great atmosphere and lots of Austrailian and British folks moving through plus a kitchen for us to use. We made several meals in the hostel, meals that consisted of vegetables and more vegetables! After a few days here we were able to get some advice on places to go, things to see and I found a couple of girls traveling solo to possibly meet up with in the future after Morgan goes back to the states. It was a great spot full of energy, friendly guests and employees but a bit young..... with all the late night activity I started to feel a bit old. We spent days wondering the city and not doing a whole lot of anything in particular, the biggest park (Parque Metropoliton) was closed on Sunday for elections so we put it off and never made it back. I did manage to catch the newest movie in the Twlight series and Morgan went to see an action flick, so far that it the only thing we´ve paid to see in the city which helped offset the cost of our hotel stay. The sun and heat tends to hit like a freight train from 11am - 5pm so hopefully the coast will bring some relief.


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